Divij Joshi

Divij Joshi is a lawyer and tinkers in technology and policy. He tweets @divij_joshi.

Trademark

Matal v Tam and the Question of Free Speech and Trademarks – Part II


In Part I of this post, I reported on the US Supreme Court’s groundbreaking judgement in Matal v Tam, which held that trademarks qualify for the protection of speech under the first amendment of the constitution of the US, and consequently, a provision of law which refused registration based on the fact that such trademarks may be disparaging to certain individuals or groups, was struck down. This post examines the issues in Matal, on the relationship between trademark law and…


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Trademark

Matal v Tam and the Question of Free Speech and Trademarks – Part I


The Supreme Court of the United States, in a unanimous (8-0) decision in Matal v. Tam (582 US ___ (2017)) delivered on June 19, affirmed a federal court’s decision holding that US Trademark law’s restriction on registration of disparaging marks violates the First Amendment to the Constitution of the US, which provides protection against laws abridging the freedom of speech. In this post, I discuss the findings in Matal, and analyse the possible implications which the judgement may have for…


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Copyright Innovation Overlaps in IP

Open/Secret – Assessing India’s Commitment to Open Data


Image from here   The ‘Digital India’ slogan has not been enough to pull the government out of its digital data doldrums. India’s rank in the Global Open Data Index, which ranks countries on openness across various sets of government data, dropped 15 places to No. 32 between 2015 and 2016. While some gains have been made in the implementation of the data.gov.in portal under the National Data Sharing and Accessibility Policy (“NDSAP”), these are fledgling in relation to the…


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Others

SpicyIP Weekly Review (June 18 – June 24)


The week’s thematic highlight has to be the guest post on the ‘physical copy’ doctrine in Indian Copyright Law, contributed by MV Swaroop and Shrey Patnaik. In the aftermath of the Raabta-Magadheera copyright row, Swaroop analyses copyright in cinematographic films and the apparent divergence of the Calcutta High Court from the text of Section 14 of the Copyright Act in allowing the producer of a film to sue for infringement of a ‘copycat’ or substantially similar film. The topical highlight…


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Copyright

The Philosophy Behind the ‘Physical Copy’ Doctrine


This guest post has been written by MV Swaroop (with inputs from Shrey Patnaik). In this post, Swaroop and Patnaik analyse, in the context of the Raabta dispute, whether the producer of a film has the standing to sue for infringement, or if such action can only be brought by the scriptwriter. Our earlier posts on the Raabta dispute are available here and here. The Raabta-Magadheera controversy fizzled out a few days ago, with the producers of Magadheera withdrawing their suit. Then,…


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Others

SpicyIP Weekly Review (June 11- June 17)


(This Weekly Review was written by SpicyIP fellow Sreyoshi Guha) This week’s thematic highlight was the two-part guest post by Eashan Ghosh on the distinction between an action for trademark infringement under section 29(1) and that under section 29(2) of the Trademarks Act. Part 1 begins by highlighting this distinction as part of the contentions raised during a recent trademark infringement case before the Bombay High Court. Eashan argues that both the sections are embedded in an ‘activity-comparison-condition’ chain that the…


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Patent

Supreme Court of the US Reins In Forum Shopping in Patent Litigation


The Supreme Court of the United States, (“SCOTUS”) in its recent decision in TC Heartland LLC v. Kraft Foods Group Brands LLC, significantly altered patent litigation in US law by reducing the possible forums available to plaintiffs to bring infringement actions against domestic defendants. Background and SCOTUS Ruling On examining the sheer volume of patent litigation in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Texas (“EDTX”), one might assume that it is a hotbed of innovative activity…


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Designs

Calcutta High Court Clarifies the Scope of ‘New And Original Design’ and the Responsibility Of Controller In Issuing Orders In Two Recent Decisions


The Calcutta High Court in two recent decisions has clarified some important aspects of the Designs Act, 2000 (“the Act”). Both cases were appeals to the High Court against the orders of the Controller of Designs, under Section 36 the Act. Our previous posts on the law of designs in India are available here. Case No. 1: Controller Must Pass Reasoned Orders In Krishna Plastic Industries vs Controller Of Patents And Designs, the subject matter of the Appeal was an…


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Others

SpicyIP Weekly Review (May 7 –13)


Our topical highlights this week were both provided by Prof. Basheer. The first post was the news that the DU Photocopy Case finally reached its closure, with the Supreme Court, in a bench consisting of Justices Ranjan Gogoi and Navin Sinha, refusing leave to the Indian Reprographic Rights Organization (“IRRO”) to appeal against the judgement of the Delhi High Court in the DU Photocopy Case. Given that the IRRO was only an intervener in the original suit, the Supreme Court…


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Copyright Innovation

You Wouldn’t Stream a Car – What Netflix’s Refusal to Bow to Pirates Means for Digital Piracy


On April 28, 2017, a hacker/s called ‘thedarkoverlord’ managed to exploit a weak point in Netflix’s security, and hijacked a copy of the first 10 episodes of its hugely popular original series Orange Is the New Black, threatening to release these episodes to the public unless Netflix agreed to pay an unspecified ransom amount. Given that each episode costs an estimated 4 Million USD to produce, one would assume that they would be anxious, to say the least, to protect…


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